Philadelphia Tackles CSOs With Precast Concrete Box Culvert

Oldcastle Precast's special culvert garnered approval from the Phildadelphia Water Department and doubled capacity on a $12.5 million combined sewer outfall project
Philadelphia Tackles CSOs With Precast Concrete Box Culvert
The new state-of-the-art outflow has twice the capacity and will reduce the risk of chronic flooding in Philadelphia.

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Oldcastle Precast supplied an 11-foot by 11-foot precast concrete box culvert with a V-shaped channel for the $12.5 million Laurel Street CSO improvement project in Philadelphia. It replaced the existing 100-year-old, 16-foot-diameter brick combined sewer outfall.

It was imperative to restore the operation of the Laurel Street combined sewer outfall as soon as possible. The project is part of an EPA order to reduce the number of CSO discharges to the Delaware River. The new state-of-the-art outflow has twice the capacity and will reduce the risk of chronic flooding. As part of its original development plan and $164 million expansion of the SugarHouse Casino2, SugarHouse agreed to upgrade the infrastructure.

The Philadelphia Water Department decided that a precast concrete box culvert would be a feasible option for performance and accelerate a very aggressive construction schedule. Using a prefabricated concrete box culvert was a first for the City of Philadelphia. In all, Oldcastle Precast supplied 1,307 linear feet of V-shaped culvert for the project. The culvert was arranged as a triple run of 436-foot culvert each.

The special precast culvert presented many challenges to Oldcastle's engineering department. It was essential for the Telford, Pennsylvania-based company to provide precast concrete boxes that met the Philadelphia Water Department’s stringent design criteria for underground structures.

There were load considerations to be worked into the culvert design because the precast structure would be located beneath the main parking lot of the casino, a small building called the SugarHouse Poker Room, and an access road that would connect the main parking lots to additional parking areas. The connector road would be the main access road for buses and delivery truck traffic to and from the casino.

Oldcastle Precast’s design of the box culvert was reviewed and approved by Urban Engineers of Philadelphia. Manufacturing of the culvert sections took approximately four months with time to spare for the project to be completed on schedule.

JPC Contracting of Blackwood, New Jersey, received the formal agreement for the first phase of site work and contracted with Oldcastle Precast to provide the precast concrete culvert.


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